Edwards’s Pheasant found in Central Vietnam

Captive-bred female Edwards’s Pheasant
What appears to have been a female Edwards’s Pheasant (Lophura edwardsi) was found by a railway worker near the Hai Van Pass in Central Vietnam in December. It was taken to the forest management station at nearby Bac Hai Van Nature Reserve. The bird’s left leg had been injured in a hunter’s snare.

There have been very few records of Edwards’s Pheasant since the 1920s when the renowned French ornithologist and aviculturist, Jean Delacour, sent a collection of live birds back to Europe. Some of these birds were collected from the Hai Van Pass area where this recent bird was found. All Edwards’s Pheasants currently in captivity outside Vietnam are thought to have originated from the birds collected by Delacour over 90 years ago.




Edwards’s Pheasant (male) in captivity

Fortunately the species breeds well in aviaries and there is a healthy captive population in Europe and North America. For birders visiting Vietnam however the chances of coming across an Edwards’s Pheasant in the wild are unfortunately very slim indeed.